Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Amalia’s Mermaid Birthday Parties

Ever since her sixth birthday party last August (theme:  Fairyland), Amalia has been planning for her seventh birthday party, which she decided would be a mermaid party.  Her Mommy spent months on the internet, tracking down treasures like mermaid necklaces and mermaid spoons and personalized mermaid goody bags and a mermaid outfit for each guest.  When Amalia’s mermaid costume came in the mail, she couldn’t wait to try it on.  And she looked so happy!
Amalia insisted on having the party in August (her birthday’s actually on August 26) even though many of her friends were still out of town on Sunday, August 16, when six girls arrived, along with parents and a couple of siblings.  Most of them put on their mermaid outfits at once, and then they got a complete “mermaid makeover” with face painting by Amalia and Nico’s artistic nanny, Jennie, (who will be leaving in October, when she has her own baby.)  After the makeover, the girls decorated mermaid mirrors with shells, played mermaid Bingo and “Pin the Tail on the Mermaid”, and had their Polaroid photos taken in the photo booth to record the day.
There were snacks on the table—sandwiches and cookies shaped like shells, seahorses and mermaid tails, veggies, including a hummus and carrot octopus, and, finally, it was time for the cake, which Mommy and Amalia had made the night before.  (Amalia made the mermaid on the cake all by herself!)  The mermaid piñata with blue hair was the centerpiece until it was time to unload her treats by pulling on ribbons (so much nicer than beating them out of her with a stick!)
The New York birthday party ended, just like last year, with the young mermaids throwing Yiayia Joanie out of Amalia’s bedroom so they could open the presents and goodie bags in private.
And then it was time for Amalia’s Massachusetts birthday party in Grafton, attended by her extended family.   On August 26, Amalia woke to a breakfast of cupcakes topped with a candle.  Because she had spent the entire summer obsessively reading all the Harry Potter books, she was wearing a nightgown based on Harry and Hermione’s Hogwarts school uniform.  Then her aunt Frosso and family gave Amalia her favorite birthday gift of all—a Sorting Hat, just like Harry had at Hogwarts, which sits on your head and selects which house you are destined for: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, or Ravenclaw.  The hat talks and its mouth moves, and Amalia got chosen for Gryffindor, just like Harry Potter.
Then the rest of us had our chance at the sorting hat, as it analyzed our nature.  Yiayia Joanie got Ravenclaw—(for students who are arrogant and intelligent.)
Soon Amalia and Nico were down by the pool, waiting for people to arrive.  Amalia checked out the Emoji piñata.
People came and splashed and swam like mermaids and ate pizza and Greek salad.  The Emoji piñata was destroyed.  Then it was time for the Mermaid cake and ice cream.  The cake came from my favorite bakery—Yummy Mummy in Westboro.   Amalia had given the baker and designer a detailed memo on what color the frosting should be—yellow and purple hair, blue for the waves, etc.
Amalia blew out the mermaid tail candle and insisted on cutting the cake herself.

The celebrating went on all afternoon, but before it was over, we assembled to take this photograph of us.   It will be a bittersweet memory, because we don’t know when we will all be together again.  Marina and Jeff (at left) were headed back to San Francisco. Eleni, Emilio and their kids, at right (with Amalia clutching her beloved book) headed back to New York. And Frosso and her family, including husband Sy, little Stone and Baby Eleni, as well as her mom, the Big Eleni, are moving to Sarasota, Florida!

Meanwhile, Amalia is already planning her next year’s birthday party.  Will it be a Harry Potter theme?  Stay tuned!