December 09, 2008
no really, he's five. years old.

Closer and closer to my public dancing debut. Last night Jessamyn and Keeral came over for a drill session that became an impromptu henna party. I can't get over how profoundly my social life has changed since I started taking belly dance lessons. When I moved to Brampton shortly before Blake was born, I was more or less content with the assumption that I would never have any local friends to match my Toronto pals. Or, any at all. And now, 5 years on, I have local friends, local activities and even local parties. The only thing I lack is a local boyfriend, but I'd rather have a commuting Mason than no Mason.

We had our dress rehersal last Saturday, and I felt the magic of costuming for the first time. I had no idea what a profound difference it would make to run through the choreography in full shimmying, sparkling glory. Juuki was overwhelmed with pride in her girls. I was pretty pleased myself. Since last week's practice was punctuated by long bouts of crouching on the floor, coughing helplessly, this couldn't help but be an improvement.

Yesterday was Blake's fifth birthday blow-out. For obvious reasons, I took a year off from the party thing, but somehow I managed to make the house look great without filling it with people. My secret is dollar store streamers in orange and hot pink, and helium balloon bouquets left-over from the semi-formal I supervised on Friday (tarted up with Buzz Lightyear stickers from last year's birthday). Total expenditures: $2. This is so typical of me; if I pour tonnes of money and effort into something, results are decent but if I slap a bunch of dispirate elements together, I somehow make something amazing.

Blake was spinning with glee all day long. (His first question when I picked him up from Casa Nova in the morning was, "Daddy gave me Iron Man; what did you get me for my birthday?"*) My parents showered him with Backyardigan merch, Uncle Nic bought him his first drumset and promised to give him lessons, I made him an Arthur Mothman doll...he even got a small box of chocolates from Jessamyn. Dinner was ham, scalloped potatoes, peas and coleslaw. My mom made the Iron Man cake of his dreams; he was served the head at his request and I let him eat it any way he wanted. He got to stay up late with the ladies and sing snippets of lusty pirate songs. It was pretty much the perfect day.

demotivational poster
just in case you forgot what he looks like.

I even got a present: there was a fair chance that Mason would have to stay in the hospital after his doctor's appointment yesterday, and he didn't have to after all. So my gift was not loading a sleepy and sugar-crazed Blake into his carseat for an evening in the ward. Not that I wouldn't have done it if he'd called, but it's nice not to have to add a depressing asterisk to this year's birthday celebration.

The only downside for me was that I was up till forever o'clock finishing Arthur - it took me a full half-hour to realize that the wings weren't going to work - and I was pretty tired. It was a weird kind of tired, though; I didn't feel tired but my patience was at absolute rock-bottom. I snapped at more than a few kids with very little provocation. I called it my rage-bubble. I'm just glad I didn't do it to my classes.

Tonight I'm hiding out from the oppressive sleet and trying to finish my choli. I had an appointment to eat food for money, but when I arrived I discovered that they were overbooked. Easiest $15 I ever made, and it's nice to be back in my found money/yarn money loop. If only I could let myself knit something that wasn't a gift and required foolish squandering. I'm sure I'll find some reason to blow it.

* "A pancake," I responded. "I hope you didn't get one already."

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Don't make me send out the Blake. He doesn't listen to *anyone.*