It was birthday-palooza for C this weekend, and man did we paint the town in various shades of high-fat, high-calorie frosting.
The hijinks began with G-Daddy. My dad drove up from Mississippi (yes, drove. I don't get it, either) and arrived in L.A. on Friday, just in time for my stress level to nearly top out from "Gee, is she all right?" to "She's gonna blow!" He's been living in the deep South for just over a year after being a lifelong Oklahoman, and his road trip seemed even more insane than driving from the Sooner State. (More on the Sooners later.)
So what did we do after he drove nearly the entire length of the country? Drove some more! I had to make last-minute stops at Target and Michaels (in Glendale), and after getting stuck on the 5 as people lined up for the Griffith Park Light Festival, my dad was reminded of the face-slapping reality that, like, 8 million people live here -- and drive here. It was about that time when he began plotting his 2,000-mile trip back home. And counting the minutes until he could do so.
(Now, obviously I love my dad. I say that because by the end of this post you might get the idea that I want to sell him. Wait ... serious deja vu.)
The next day, Saturday, was C's birthday party at Pan Pacific Park. We were so lucky that the weather was absolutely gorgeous. Particularly for December, when I was sure it would rain, hail, snow or rain frogs from the sky. But it was perfect. Warm. Sunny. Beautifully L.A.
Of course, before we got to the actual park we had to make a run back to Glendale. We had to pick up C's "Under the Sea"-themed cake from the amazing Porto's. I could practically hear my dad's nerves fraying.
The party itself was very cute. C ran around with her little friends, while her parents ran around after her. The cake was a hit, C was a hit, and everyone had fun.
Of course there were a couple of glitches, but as my dad said, "You won't remember in 40 years." (Frankly, I'm just hoping I remember anything in 40 years.)
One of the things I hope will stay with me is when my dad and C figured out his "official grandfather name" -- which turned out to be something I hadn't considered. I've always referred to him as "Granddaddy" because that's what I always called his father. But C kept looking for her own father when I'd say that word. She couldn't differentiate between daddy and granddaddy. Finally, my dad said, "How about Pa-Pa?" (I'm trying to get the spelling right because it's not exactly "papa.") And she said it. Just like that. And it stuck.
We had some more bonding that day. Namely, when OU beat Mizzou to clinch their place in the National Championship Game. My dad is a HUGE football fan and an insane Sooners fan. (Last year, he terrified Ian when he kept shouting for them to maim the opposing team during a bowl game. Terrifying.)
But that was after I made a short trip of my own down to San Pedro to my friend Sara's clothing party celebrating her online boutique Adelie. Forget OU, I was the one who scored -- clothing-wise at least. She gave me an amazing deal on vintage designer dresses, tops and jeans.
On Sunday, we headed to the El Capitan to see "Bolt" on the bigscreen. Not only did we see the movie in 3-D, we also saw the live holiday stage show before the movie. My dad was enthralled. C wasn't crazy about the glasses, but she sat through the entire movie -- and even tried to climb onstage.
My dad had to head back to Mississippi but not before we grabbed lunch across the street at California Pizza Kitchen. And not before I had to run one last errand. To pick up C's Christmas pictures. In Glendale.
Now, obviously my dad loves me. I say that because by the time you finish reading this post you might get the idea that ... well, you know the rest.