It's beginning to look a lot like....

Even though Bret had to work for part of this weekend...it was a really nice weekend. On Saturday Emily had a birthday party in the morning then after nap time we had one of her little friends and her brother over to decorate Christmas cookies with us. This is something that we have done every year and one of our family favorite activities. I have perfected the art of rolling and cutting out the cookies so that it is no longer the dreaded part of the job and I have the icing recipe down so that it firms up enough to not stick once it dries and still tastes quite yummy. This was Palmer's first year and he yet again reminded me that he is his father's child. While Emily relished the art of "decorating" each cookie, Palmer felt as though it was a very important job. Don't get me wrong he loved doing it but it was a very simple process in his mind. Pick out a cookie, tell mom which color frosting, choose a color of sprinkle, sprinkle, tell mom done. That was it. He was very methodical about it and was more interested in getting them all decorated than in the decorating itself. Just an observation.
So about the birthday party. This was one of Emily's friends from the school she went to last year. Side note...when we first moved to PA we thought that I would go to work right away and the kids would attend the child development center at the hospital. We had their names on the list right away and had even made a couple of visits to the facility. When we realized that a job was not going to happen right away (an there was no way to afford the CDC without it) it was mid August and I needed to find a preschool ASAP. I called every preschool within a 30 mile radius and everyone was full and had a waiting list already. The week before school started a school about 15 minutes away called to say that they had an opening (a little boy wasn't potty trained in time.. we are in). Something about Berks county that I learned very quickly is that people never leave this town. They were born here and will die here. So it was very interesting for Emily to become part of this little group of kids whose parents all went to high school together and were still BFF.

I am not exaggerating here when I say that this group of parents are the most clickish group of adults I have ever met. When we first started school I asked one of the mom's about her play group that I had heard about and she replied that it was just her and some of her friends that got their kids together to play but that she thought there was a couple of national organizations that she could go online and get the contact info for me. NOT KIDDING! Last year was rough already but every attempt I made to become friends with some of these moms was met with cold shoulders. They had their group and were not interested in new playmates. UNTIL THEY MET EMILY.

Bret and I joke that Emily has been our salvation when it comes to a social life more than once in this town. Kids love her and beg for her to be included. I got calls from moms for play dates, birthday parties, etc that their kids INSISTED that Emily Heskett be included. In fact twice this summer mom's called b/c Emily was going to be the only girl invited b/c her little boyfriends said it was Emily or no one. Even though Emily has changed schools she still gets calls from her previous school friends. I laugh because I wonder if eventually these kids will follow their parent's lead and choose to be friends with "the right kids". In the meantime I once again was in the gossip girl's version of "the in mom's" and was glad that we no longer are forced to run in that circle.

Emily's friends are all very different and that makes me glad that she likes people for who they are. Whether it is her little friend J-whose dad picks him up and drops him off everyday in a new H4, S-who is the most homily child I have ever seen and she worships Emily, O-whose is full of energy and walks her own path in life, C-whose mom is the VP of students at the school I work at, or I-whose mom is a whole other post in itself. I never would have guessed that the whole mom thing would feel like high school all over again but at least Em has no idea.

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