Saturday, September 26, 2009

Birds and birthday

Last night we celebrated Emily's 10th birthday, a sleepover in the backyard, complete with new tent courtesy of Grandma Becky. I'd wanted to do this for a while, but had always feared that the kids wouldn't sleep well, so I wouldn't sleep well, and that I'd end up having to return some poor scared kid home in the middle of the night.

For sleep, at least, the tent made all the difference: our first non-yard sale tent, fully dry (important since it began raining this morning early), with a big main room for the party girls, plus an alcove for shoes and a side room for little sister and friend. I slept blissfully in a separate tent, the best of our old ones, dry too but miraculously so given its age. It was the best sleep I've ever gotten for a child's overnight of any sort, much less camping.

For play, though, the hit of the evening was the chickens, now big enough to be safe from most handling accidents, still small enough to be cute. Swallow fell asleep on one guest's shoulder, her head resting as comfortably as she does on her sister chickens' backs. Taylor enjoyed affections from the friend who helped name her, and proved herself queen of the flock by enjoying a strut on top of the swing set.

Also a hit was Brian's invented game, remarkably not ending in disaster: bowling for worms. One girl got a good push on the rope swing, while the others, the "worms" all hovered underneath it and tried not to get hit by the swinging missile. Every girl begged for all 3 of her turns. It was, by the way, so dark that none of my photos of the event worked out, the motion and lack of light proving too much for my poor camera.

Whatever the reason, I was very happy at the result. We all woke up dry with rain pattering on our fabric roofs; we all slept for at least 7 hours; no one was injured, despite our best efforts to risk their health with tent guy-lines and rope swings. I came indoors in the morning to a clean house, ready to make breakfast for the adventurers.

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