Last Saturday, Philip and I attended a birthday party. This wasn’t just any old party, but the Dolly Party Imagination Library Birthday Party. Imagination Library is a program that mails a book a month to all registered participants. It is open to children ages birth to five. Even though Philip has graduated from the program, we joined our local United Way in celebrating the third year of this great resource in our community.
Philip had a good time last year where each participating organization had a book-themed craft or activity. Since Philip’s skills at following directions have improved, I wanted to see how he would do this year. Unfortunately, there were fewer crafts offered this year.
Despite that difference, Philip had a great time. As another parent remarked to me, “I see he keeps you on your toes.” Philip was almost always in motion, darting around the gymnasium where the event took place. I did quite a bit of running myself.
Oddly enough, he was reluctant to get in the bounce house. There was no time limit, so children were always inside jumping. I think Philip felt nervous about climbing in while the incline was in constant motion. Rather than making him put his shoes back on, I let him stand and watch the other kids. We would move to one of the tables and then come back. Suddenly, he decided he was ready and climbed right in. I let him jump for at least five minutes. When he appeared to be getting sweaty, I announced, “All done.” He exited without protest.
Last year, Philip was scared of the various costumed characters, even his favorite, Curious George. There were fewer characters this year, so Philip spent less time cowering behind me. While Philip was in the bounce house, I snapped a photo of George. Little did I know that Philip would work up the courage to reach out and hold Curious George’s hand. He even gave him a high-five before leaving.
What’s a party without cake? Philip opted for a chocolate cupcake. I was leading him to the side of the gym to sit on the floor when Philip got his own idea. He took over the corner of the table where two National Honor Society students were helping with name tags. I can’t blame him for wanting to eat at a table. Apparently he has more class than me. The girls didn’t mind sharing their table. One remarked that she and Philip would make a great team after she noticed he was only eating the frosting. “I prefer the cake,” she said. The other girl, who had turned to reply almost got frosting on her cheek when Philip suddenly extended the arm holding the cupcake. The first student and I gasped, but the second one escaped unscathed.