When you were 7 weeks old, you were already becoming a party animal. One day, you'll read this post and find out that my 30th birthday was the first party of your life.
I was suspecting something fishy when I walked up the stairs of Zia Gaia's house. Babulya i Dedulya were visiting us for a few days and Gaia invited us all to her house for a "baby" brunch. Don't worry, kiddo. A baby brunch is not where you eat babies. It's where you meet babies :) Her friend Kate just had a baby boy a week after you were born, and I thought we were getting together to meet him. But as I walked into the dining room, my mouth dropped. Guess whom I saw -- your Great-Grandma. And your uncle Leo, and aunt Megan, and your Grandma Louise. What a surprise -- particularly Great-Grandma. I was so looking forward to have her meet you. She just had a surgery 2 months ago, and I didn't hope in my wildest dreams that she'd come, but she did. She is a real trouper, and nothing could keep her away from you. As I hugged everyone, tears came to my eyes. I found your Dad's eye, grinning and also wet.
Since we decided not to go to France this fall, your Dad decided to bring France to me. Aunt Megan and uncle Leo made France themed decorations, and your Daddy slaved over baguettes and tomato onion tarts the day before in 90F heat. I thought he was crazy! Even an obsessive cook like me wouldn't consider baking in such heat. Babulya was making bayalda (an eggplant dish) and piroshki. She also brought some caviar for a little Russian touch. Everyone was making so much stuff, I simply backed out of the kitchen and didn't go there until it was time for dinner. I kept giving them a hard time with going so overboard for a simple potluck lunch. When I finally dared to come into my sacred territory (one day you'll share a kitchen with me and realize that it's no picnic ;), I just couldn't contain myself. Every board was dirty. The counters were overflowing and the heat was unbelievable. I am sweating just remembering it. What can I say -- I am a little Soup Nazi. Wait, you don't know about Soup Nazi yet. But I am sure that by the time you are old enough to read this, you'll be old enough to be initiated into the wonderful world of Seinfeld. Anyway... So besides cooking and baking, your poor Dad and Babulya had the hard job of calming me down. Well, they did a great job with it all. It wasn't long before I started laughing at the whole situation and they even took over the job of making dinner to help me relax. I don't deserve such an awesome family -- really, I don't!
I've never felt as complete and happy on any other birthday in my life. Just watching your Great-Grandmother (Prababushka) holding you for the first time was enough to make my heart melt. That's just how I wanted to spend my birthday. No restaurants, no big crowds, just family (Zia Gaia and Zio Jerome count as family :)
[Sammy meets Grandma Louise for the first time]
After lunch, the heat really got to us, and we headed over to Waltham where out of town family were staying. We had cake and sat around talking while you took a nap. Eventually, it was time to head home, but celebration wasn't over. The next day, your Dad took us all to Isabella Stewart Gardner's Museum for lunch. He knew that I was hoping to go there for your baby shower and since it didn't work out then, he arranged for the 10 of us to have lunch in their garden on my birthday. You were amazing the entire 2 days and joined in all the fun. You started smiling right around that weekend. You probably didn't know what you were smiling about yet, but maybe you'll read this post some day and it will make you smile again.
Love, hugs, and kisses,