Now that life is settling back into day to day Anchorage, our return from the Midwest and Henry's second birthday party seems like a blur and an amazing achievement. We traveled back to Alaska with the following (to list it is the only way to believe it): a jogging stroller, car seat, 2 fish boxes filled to the brim (not with fish), 2 adult suitcases, 2 adult carry on bags, and 2 Henry carry on bags. Thankfully there was no layover.
Henry was in a happy mood throughout the entire flight, though he is getting wigglier by the second. Personally, I classify a toddler as a bad flyer if they fuss and keep the plane at attention with crying and whining. If they only wiggle and kick their parents while chowing down on snacks and playing with stickers, that's a victory. Ultimately, I'm looking forward to a long time passing before we fly again -- a time when Henry will have his own seat and a little more ability to lock into his own activities. Slowly but surely it all moves forward.
Once we arrived home a very tired Henry hit the carpeting as if shot out of gun and seemed to express endless joy at the safety of his toys. Becky and I shifted into a quick unpacking mode, generated our Costco list, divided up the tasks at hand, and then set to them. Becky focused on the birthday cake and cupcakes while I headed to the store for buns and a few other perishables that just couldn't have been purchased before we traveled south. It was the second leg of our Saturday marathon and by 8 pm we had an exhausted Hank and a home fully prepared for our birthday guests at 10:30 am the following morning.
It may seem odd to the uninitiated, but toddler parties are usually around 10 am. You're essentially building your schedule around playtime, snack/lunch, and then a goodbye when everyone retreats home for naps. Evenings and late afternoons just don't swing it. By 1pm Bella, Maggie, Ann and all the adults had headed home into a beautiful Sunday blue sky, something which was in question at 9 am when storm clouds loomed. Everyone had a nice time, the dark clouds happily drifted across the party's playtime in silence, and Henry's Mom and Dad relaxed into a wonderful night's sleep that evening.