Now that I’ve had a couple months of being a stay-at-home Dad under my belt, I felt it was time to host a lunch.  I’ve been out to lunch a few times with Ellie, and she’s met other babies, but now I felt ready to have people over.  I can handle this I think.  It’s time to show off my mom skills.  I decide to cook, and I’m also going to make an apple bundt cake.  I really want a cake and this is the perfect excuse to make one.  And to be very honest, I don’t mind too much if they don’t like it, because I’m mostly making it for me.  The event was lunch, and the reason was to catch up with some good friends; four adults and three babies.  Haniyyah, Meghan, and Melissa.  Haniyyah’s baby, Zayna, is just over a year.  Melissa’s baby, Marcello, is almost 5 months.  And Ellie is 8 months.  We were all coworkers, but between moving, or getting canned, none of us work together anymore.  And now, all of us have kids expect for Meghan.  I thought I knew what to expect.  I thought I knew what I was getting myself into…      

THE EVENT

I wake up at 9:00am in a panic.  Ellie had kept me up between the hours of 3:00am and 5:30am.  This was not part of my plan.  I have three hours to feed Ellie, make a cake, prep lunch, and take a shower.  And of all the times Ellie decides to be fussy and clingy, it happens to be this morning.  She is rarely fussy in the morning.  She’s usually hanging out by the front door chewing on a shoelace.  But today, she’s holding onto my leg and whining.  I try to put her down, I try to get her to play, but nothing works.  I even try holding her while I cook.  It’s pretty hard peeling an apple one-handed.  As I watch the clock, I quickly realize I will not be showering this morning.

Haniyyah arrives a little after 11:00am while I am trying to put Ellie down for her nap.  After a half hour of fighting Ellie to get her to fall asleep, I make my grand entrance downstairs.  But Zayna does not find me so grand, and is not in a good mood.  Haniyyah tries to put her down for her nap.  Finally, I can get my cake in the oven and try to clean up my mess.  It was one cake, but since I was trying to do it with a baby in my arms it looked like I had wrestled a live chicken in a flour factory on my counter.  At 11:45am Meghan and Melissa show up with Marcello.  He’s just chill.  Having a bit of trouble falling asleep, Zayna is back downstairs.  With my kid down, and all my guests in the living room, I’m finally able to start cooking lunch.

While I’m cooking, Haniyyah and Melissa are grossing Meghan out with pregnancy and breast feeding stories.  I think I overheard words like “stretch marks” and “sore nipples.”  Meghan loves babies, but she has a squeamish stomach with certain things.  For example, she was horrified when I told her we had my wife’s placenta in our freezer.  I joked that we planned on making strawberry peach and placenta smoothies.  She was not impressed.

At 12:30pm Ellie wakes up and is ready to join the fun.  Out of the 5 hours everyone was over, this was the only 10 minutes that all three babies were awake at the same time.  There they were, all three babies lined up on the couch.  Ellie is excited to see her friends, Zayna is totally stressed about her personal space being invaded, and Marcello is just chill.  Not knowing how to handle two women he just lies there motionless.  Ellie tries to bond with Zayna first by admiring her hair.  “Wow, do you use conditioner?”  Zayna replies with a “Who is this kid, and why is she grabbing my hair!?”  She has a meltdown.  Marcello and Ellie pretend not to notice.  It’s an awkward moment for them, like when you were a kid over at a friend’s house and their parent’s start arguing in front of you at the dinner table.  Ten minutes later Zayna goes down for her nap.  Then there were two.

Ellie, a little hurt and embarrassed by the rejection from Zayna, isn’t too eager to make fast friends with Marcello yet.  Although a little intimated by an older woman, Marcello leans in to make his move.  But now he’s getting tired.  So he goes down for a nap.  Then there was one.

Finally, around 1:00pm we eat lunch.  We are all able to really chat and catch up at this point.  It’s funny how things change, and how they stay the same.  The three of us parents just keep talking about our kids. Comparing stories about poop and sleep schedules.  But Meghan still doesn’t disappoint with her crazy stories.  Stories of people leaving threatening notes on her car, creepy neighbors that comment on when she showers, or her weekend party night shenanigans.   I think we all live vicariously through her and her stories now.

Marcello is still asleep by the table and Ellie’s on the prowl.  With him sleeping and strapped into the bouncy chair, Ellie finds this to be the best time to try to make friends with him.  She crawls over and starts grabbing his face and his feet.  He’s got nowhere to go.

At 3:00pm Zayna wakes up in a much better mood.  But Marcello went down again so it’s just the ladies who are awake.  Ellie tries to make friends again, but Zayna cries.  And because she cries, Ellie cries, and because Ellie cries, Zayna cries.  Haniyyah is holding both of them now and Zayna is crying thinking “Let go of that other kid!” and Ellie is crying thinking “Who are you!? Where’s my Dad!?”  So they each try to one up each other.  After powering through the afternoon and getting attention from three ladies, this last encounter is just enough to push Ellie over the edge.  I put her down for a nap.  Because of all the commotion, Marcello wakes up.  He’s sitting on the couch just looking nervous as Zayna sizes him up.  Zayna doesn’t really care for boys.   She’s not a fan of me, and apparently she’s not too interested in Marcello either.  So she disses us both, but gets all smiley for Meghan and Mel.

The afternoon winds down and everyone packs up and heads home.  Then there were none.  For a moment the house is quiet.  This is nice.  I survived my first afternoon with three babies.  I managed to make lunch, make a cake, and put my baby down for a nap…  twice!

And then I realize this is just the beginning…

Time for another piece of cake.

2 thoughts on “LADIES, BABIES, and LUNCH

  1. awww…i LOVE this post! We had such a great time…Zayna apologizes for bein such a fussy-puss…and cant wait to do it again!

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